Gavin Aronsen | Ames Tribune
The Texas company planning to build a crude oil pipeline that would cut across 17 Iowa counties en route to Illinois is delaying public information meetings that are required to kick off the process with the Iowa Utilities Board.
Dallas-based Energy Transfer Partners LP, operating on the project through its subsidiary Dakota Access LLC, plans to connect the 1,100-mile pipeline from a hub in Illinois to North Dakota’s Bakken Shale, which is in the midst of a boom in domestic energy extraction.
ETP planned to hold the meetings in each of the 17 impacted counties in late September and October. But now the company is aiming for December.
“We are moving our public informational meetings to December in order to be respectful of the harvest season in Iowa and the Thanksgiving holiday,” said Lisa Dillinger, a spokeswoman with Granado Communications Group, the company representing ETP on the project.
“We will continue to reach out to farming communities and community leaders along the proposed route to discuss the details of our project.”
Dillinger said the meeting delays have not changed the projected completion date of the fourth quarter of 2016.
Rob Hillesland, an IUB spokesman, said a schedule for the meetings would be posted on the agency’s website once it approved the dates.
ETP has said it has sent more than 8,000 letters to landowners along its proposed route, which cuts through Story County south of Ames and across a county-owned property where the Heart of Iowa Nature Trail sits between Huxley and Cambridge.